Kumisión to host public hearings for Guam place names project

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I Kumisión i Fino’ CHamoru yan i Fina’nå’guen i Historia yan Lina’la’ i Taotao Tåno’ (The Commission on the CHamoru Language and the Teaching of the History and Culture of the Indigenous People of Guam) announces public hearings for its first phase of the I Na’an Lugåt (Guam Place Names) Project.

In accordance with P.L. 33-236, the Kumisión is mandated to 1) develop criteria for reviewing and selecting place names 2) study ancient CHamoru terminology and pronunciation of place names and restore aforementioned pronunciation with the current CHamoru orthography. (GCA Chapter 88, section 88105).

The first public hearing will be the first of three to be held at community centers around the
island to review the names of villages. The Kumisión will address village names over the next three months. Villages have been divided into southern, central, and northern regions for purposes of review. This month’s public hearing will focus on southern village names and will be held at the Agat Community Center on April 13th at 6:00 pm.

The villages up for review on April 13 are Hagat (Agat), Santa Rita (Santa Rita), Humatak (Umatac), Malesso’ (Merizo), Inalahan (Inarajan) and Talo’fo’fo’ (Talofofo). Central village names will be addressed in May and northern village names in June.

Presiding over the hearing are Kumision Members Robert Underwood, Jimmy Teria and Teresita Flores who comprise the Kumiten Na’an Lugåt (Place Name Committee). Interested community members are welcome to attend. The public is encouraged to provide comments on the village names under review. Everyone will adhere to public health guidelines in place. Zoom access will be announced at least two days before the hearing.

Those interested may also submit comments or concerns via email to Project Coordinator Elyssa Santos at Elyssa.Santos@KFCHamoru.guam.gov.

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